JoBlo’s own Chris Bumbray recently got to check out the Sundance Film Festival premiere of director Steven Soderbergh and screenwriter David Koepp’s ghost story Presence, and in his 7/10 review (which you can read HERE), he described the film as “a supernatural tale that’s light on horror but heavy on heart.” A wider audience will have the chance to see the move soon (we assume), as Deadline reports that Neon has picked up the distribution rights to the film. A release date has not yet been announced.
As Deadline notes, “The deal comes 35 years after Soderbergh’s $1 million Sundance deal for sex, lies, & videotape and subsequent Palme d’Or win at Cannes followed by a box office gross of $25 million, helped galvanize independent film into a viable business. It seems poetic he would return with a film for the 40th edition of Sundance, and make a major deal there.” It hasn’t been revealed how much Neon is paying for Presence, but it is known that they came out the winner of a bidding war between “about 10” different interested distributors. So they’re probably forking over “a healthy sum”.
The story of Presence gets rolling when a family moves into a suburban house and becomes convinced they are not alone. A supernatural force has infiltrated the house, and taken a specific interest in the couple’s daughter.
The film stars Lucy Liu, Chris Sullivan, Callina Liang, Julia Fox, Eddy Maday, and West Mulholland.
Deadline points out that it was “shot entirely in a single location, which creates the haunting mood sought by the filmmakers.” Bumbray’s review informed us that “Soderbergh’s camera is always from the perspective of the presence itself (no one uses the term ghost here), making it an interesting visual exercise. The family is observed from an arm’s length, with us eventually realizing that the presence itself isn’t necessarily malignant, nor is it even aware of why it’s in their home in the first place.”
Julie M. Anderson and Ken Meyer produced Presence, with Koepp serving as an executive producer alongside Corey Bayes. H.H. Cooper co-produced and Gus Gustafson, Samara Levenstein, and Claire Kenny are associate producers.
Are you interested in Presence, and are you glad to hear that it has secured a distribution deal with Neon? Let us know by leaving a comment below.